Shiv Sena's Advice To PM Narendra Modi After Pak Attack: Focus Less On Polls, More On Security

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Shiv Sena's Advice To PM Narendra Modi After Pak Attack: Focus Less On Polls, More On Security

Two Indian soldiers were killed and mutilated near the Line of Control on Monday.


Mumbai:  The Shiv Sena, which has taken on the role of NDA's in-house opposition, took the government to task today for the murder and mutilation of two soldiers on the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir. Senior leader Ramdas Kadam said Prime Minister Narendra Modi "should focus less on elections and more on security."

 "After BJP came to power, there has been a line of martyrs," Mr Kadam said. The Prime Minister, he said, should say "how many jawans will be martyred and how many women will be widowed before we give a fitting reply to Pakistan".

The government, which came to power with a tough-on-terror image, is already under fire from the opposition.

The Shiv Sena has always maintained a hawkish position when it comes to Pakistan and demanded the scrapping of cultural exchanges till Pakistan stops perpetrating terror in India. Today, its tirade reflected the Congress's.

"We did one surgical strike and Pakistan has replied with an answer that is 10 times of what we did," Mr Kadam said, echoing Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal's taunt: "When Hemraj was beheaded, Sushmaji said we will get 10 for one. I want to ask the Prime Minister, how many for two?"

Lance Naik Hemraj Singh was killed and mutilated in Jammu and Kashmir in 2013, when the UPA government was in power.

AK Anthony, who was the defence minister in the UPA government, said such an attack had had happened "only once," in his eight-year term, "but in the last three years it has already happened thrice".

The Congress said there is an "absence of policy or direction to tackle Pakistan or terrorism" and attributed it to the lack of a full-time defence minister. "We will only have a full-time strategy when we have a full-time Defence Minister," said Mr Sibal.  Union finance minister Arun Jaitley is handling the defence portfolio after Manohar Parrikar took charge of Goa as its Chief Minister.

The CPM has questioned the efficacy of last year's surgical strikes across the Line of Control, conducted by the army after the terror attack in Uri.  "It is clear that last year's surgical strike failed in its stated purpose to warn Pakistan," senior CPM leader Sitaram Yechury has said.

India today warned Pakistan of an "unequivocal response" during an exchange between the top military commanders of the two nations. Hinting at strong action which goes over and above counter-fire at the Line of Control, Union Minister Arun Jaitley has said, "Such acts are unheard of even during war...The sacrifice of these soldiers will not go in vain... the army will respond appropriately."


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